Archive for January, 2012
Online marketing is a constantly developing field of expertise, with innovations emerging weekly – but no development has been quite significant over the past year than the rise of mobile devices. With more people than ever before owning smartphones and tablets, mobile devices are fast becoming the most important factor among internet marketing experts, who all advise that optimising a website for mobile traffic is the priority for 2012.
Because smartphones and tablets such as the iPhone and iPad have a full browsing ability, unlike the previous generation of mobile phones, they can still navigate a “normal” webpage without too much difficulty. Nevertheless, they still benefit from a more mobile-friendly site – and this is especially true for commercial sites. From an online marketing perspective, increased mobile traffic leads to more sales and conversions, as nowadays an ever-increasing amount of online transactions are being conducted via mobile devices.
Search engine giant Google has confirmed once again that mobile queries reached a peak the week before Christmas last year – the same as in 2010 – which indicates that mobile users are making the most of their devices for the busiest shopping period of the year. With this in mind, retailers need to be offering internet marketing campaigns that target mobile devices and use adverts specially enhanced for these devices. They could even consider separate campaigns for mobile consumption with tweaked messages and offers – such as discounts for customers that place orders or make purchaes via their smartphones or tablets.
A report published last year by tech research company Gartner estimated that mobile traffic will overtake traffic from desktop and laptop computers by 2013 across the globe. With this “deadline” looming, any company or organisation that relies on its online presence should be optimising their sites for mobile traffic, if they have not already done so. The research also showed an underlying trend that is more worrying: many online marketing professionals had not woken up to this sea change in internet behaviour and did not trust users of mobile devices to register with their sites or make online purchases – although all the evidence points the opposite way.
Fortunately, good online marketing companies are perfectly placed to assist clients with the process of mobile traffic optimisation, and can offer both advice and technical expertise.
Make sure that your website is not left behind in the mobile revolution!
If you plan or provide services for major events, you may want to investigate i-Meet. It is a global community that allows planners to request information from suppliers and allows suppliers to advertise their sales. It also provides a place for people within the industry to exchange helpful information. The site does not charge a commission on projects that result from the leads; i-Meet simply charges a fee (currently it is $20) to make a request for information. Planners for all kinds of events have found their way to i-Meet. There are planners that specialize in weddings, conventions, student-events, and other events. And, as might be expected, there are suppliers that offer a range of services to meet almost any need a planner might have. If you were to go to a major event and think, “I wonder who arranged all of this,” the people that did the arranging are the same kind of people that visit i-Meet.
Planners and supplier from all over the world have joined i-Meet, and there is a plethora of countries listed on the registration page. The beauty of having such a global network is that if a planner is orchestrating an event in another region or country, he or she is able to connect with suppliers there well before the event is scheduled. In addition, discussing topics of the industry with people from different locations helps create a well-rounded view.
Planners can benefit from being members of i-Meet because they can find colleagues, exchange ideas, find answers from other professionals, and learn about the current trends in their field. The site features groups based upon both industry sector and geographical location. With over 50,000 suppliers from all over the globe, planners are sure to be able to find what they need. Planners can also gain access to reviews of suppliers, venues, etc. so that they will be well-informed before they make a purchase.
Everyone is interested in growing his or her business, and using an industry-specific network like i-Meet is a great way to do that. Suppliers will not have their profiles or advertisements drowned out by other industries, and planners will not have to sort through profiles that are irrelevant to their needs. Suppliers are able to build their experience and gain positive references and feedback so that they become more professionally recognized. And by connecting with other people in the industry, suppliers and planners will both become better at their jobs.
So, how does one build a business through i-Meet? First you create a profile as either a planner or a supplier and specify your location. If you are a planner, start discussions, join interest groups, request information from suppliers, showcase your skills, respond to requests for planners, search for venues, use planning tools, and exchange ideas with other planners. If you are a supplier, let planners know about your skills and services, join groups, take advantage of available media options, get leads on jobs, and earn good ratings from planners. Make your events memorable with i-Meet.
Dave, an avid internet marketer, freelance writer and SEO specialist, infuses his knowledge of many different subjects into all of his writings. His current project includes a website about freelance writing and where to find freelance work opportunities and freelance jobs around the internet.
Detecting Bad neighbors
A very important factor in optimizing a website for search engines is whether the domain is located in a bad neighborhood. This of course happens only if the hosting package is a web server (virtual server) and the IP is shared with other domains (shared hosting plan). This is usually the case with a very cheap hosting packages and not with a dedicated server.
Among these domains sharing the same IP on the web server, many times there are some domains that are just bad. Bad domains are those that typically have pornographic content, on-line gambling games, have malware or even scam websites that are black listed by search engines. It is possible for a good domain to be punished with a penalty from search engines because it exists in a bad neighborhood.
Therefore, if the domain is located on a shared server, webmasters should frequently check for bad neighbors. If any bad neighbors are found, then the domain should be transferred to another IP.
This check is not difficult. Webmasters can use the online tool Reverse IP Domain check. A check of the domain with this tool, will displays all the domains, and point out in red letters the domains that are likely to have suspicious content.
Google Safe Browsing
It is highly debatable among Internet marketing experts whether Google should punish the domains that share an IP with bad neighbors. However webmasters should be on the safe side, and check often with the tool mentionted above.
Furthermore Google has created and provided a tool for webmasters, the Google Safe Browsing, which webmaster can use to find out if their website has been found to be unsafe and to identify possible penalty from Google. So any that is interested into Google SEO can add this tool into their list.
For example onlinemediadirect.co.uk is safe according to Google. http://www.google.com/safebrowsing/diagnostic?site=http://www.onlinemediadirect.co.uk/
Online marketing experts have been left breathless recently by the stunning success of the internet-based campaign against the proposed Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and Protect IP Act (PIPA) legislation in the US Senate aimed at regulating the internet to prevent the downloading of US intellectual property by overseas websites.
Critics were alarmed at the proposed legislation, warning that it was badly drafted and would lead to government censorship of the internet worldwide and damage online security.
Thus, the Stop SOPA campaign was born, and represented one of the most effective online marketing campaigns of all time, with tech giants such as Google, Reddit and Wikipedia all getting involved in a day of action on 18 January. The search engine censored its own logo, Reddit took itself offline, and Wikipedia blacked out all of its content.
The legislation has since been withdrawn indefinitely, after US legislators were unprepared for the depth of the protests. Here is the key factor that made Stop SOPA such a stunning success:
It had a clear message and a definitive call to action. The campaign drew on the purest aims of any online marketing initiative: make sure the target audience knows what the campaign is about and knows what is required of it. This is as true of campaigns trying to secure new customers as it is of an online protest.
Last Wednesday, all the sites involved made it clear why they disagreed with the proposals and made it possible for users to add their names to the protest, with Google alone managing to gain 4.5 million signatures an online petition alone, and so many emails sent to the Congress that servers fell over and government websites crashed.
When it comes to online marketing campaigns for your company or your website, it will pay to follow the examples of Google, Reddit and Wikipedia, by reaching out to as many potential clients or customers as possible. This can be done by many means, the primary ones being a professionally optimised website, the canny use of social media such as Facebook and Twitter, and a regularly updated blog. You may not get the tens of millions of responses that the Stop SOPA campaigners managed, but the uplift to your company’s prospects will be noticeable!
Social networking sites like Facebook and MySpace keep friends and family connected, but they are being used by businesses more and more to promote their products and services. In fact, some sites such as LinkedIn and FastPitch are designed with the professional in mind by allowing people to connect with co-workers, employers, employees, and other people within their industry. There are even some sites (I-Meet and ResearchGATE, for example) that are industry-specific. Before you choose a site to promote your business, do some research to be sure that if will fit your needs.
A business of any size could benefit from using social networking sites. Large businesses may have accounts on several different websites with employees such as public relations specialists or department managers devoted to their maintenance. Self-employed people are able to find work by networking with other people within their industry, targeting a customer base, and making themselves customers.
Social networking sites can be set up at any time, but you must have the time to update them consistently or that you can hire someone to update them for you. Like most of life, the frequency of updates should be balanced. Too little activity will bore customers, and they will quickly move on to something more interesting. On the other hand, do not bombard customers with sales information because this will lead them begin blocking your updates. In addition, the content of the updates needs to vary. Instead of having a non-stop advertisement, let the customers learn more about the business as a whole. If you are self-employed let the clients know what kind of work-related activities you have been doing.
Social networking sites can be updated from nearly anywhere as long as there is a suitable device and Internet access. Access to the site is something that must be determined from the beginning. Obviously self-employed people will have access to their own sites. However, larger businesses must decide who will be able to post to the site. The employees that gain access should be trustworthy, responsible, and good at marketing. Should the employee leave the business, login information should be changed to protect the business’s security.
Social networking is likely a good investment of time for any business. Gone are the days of cold calls and handing out fliers because word-of-mouth advertising has become lightning fast. Now businesses can add key words to their profiles so that customers can find them more easily. They can also monitor the demographics of people who visit their profile so that they can tailor marketing to certain groups of people. Colleagues are able to share information among themselves, enhancing the ability of businesses to grow.
Although anyone can create an account on a social networking site, there is an art to running one well. Ability to post to a site should be limited to only a few people to ensure privacy and consistency. Businesses should post things that make them stand out in the customer’s mind (in a good way) so that sales will begin to increase. Frequency of posts must not be either too often or too rare, and keeping the target audience in mind will help businesses create effective networks to boost sales.
Greg Henderson, a California-based businessman with over 11 years in SEO/SEM, provided this piece based on personal endeavors and education in search engine optimization with a concentration on content optimization for the social media future. His current projects include a background checks website Easy Background Checks as well as a marriage records website Genealinks.
Ecademy is a great place to collaborate with other business people to learn and grow your business. We were that impressed by the organisation at Online media direct we have sanction this Infographic which highlights the advantages of using the community. you can embed this info graphic on your own site using the embed code below -
[Source: Online media direct]
EMBED THE IMAGE ABOVE ON YOUR SITE
Google Analytics is easily the world’s most popular analytics package. Businesses across the globe use it, from tiny blogs to major online retailers and affiliate marketers. In this article we’ll take a quick look at five very simple things that it can do for your site.
1. Track the progress of an SEO campaign. If you’re going to contract an agency to do SEO for you, it’s only natural to expect to see quantifiable results. The best SEO companies are only too happy to provide figures on how much traffic you’re getting and where it’s coming from (and more). For the most thorough picture, look at the figures from month to month and year on year so seasonal variation is taken into account.
2. Segment your visitors. Some users will like what they find on your site, spend some time there, and maybe go on to make a purchase, give your company a call, or otherwise convert from a casual visitor to a customer. Others will bounce off straight away and go elsewhere. It’s very useful to know where the two types are coming from- for example, if one organic keyword is delivering visitors of a very high quality and another is delivering people who rarely convert, you probably want to focus SEO efforts on the more valuable keyword.
If a poorly performing keyword is one that you really think should be delivering good value, take a look at where those visitors are landing. This brings us to the next point.
3. Examine page quality. Let’s say you have two high level category pages- men’s clothing and women’s clothing, for example. Comparing one against the other might reveal that men’s clothing has a far higher rate of visitor exit, with a lower percentage of people moving through it towards the products. In that case, the page needs to be redesigned. If the women’s clothing page is performing well, it’s time to figure how the two are different and what design lessons can be learned.
The new-look Google Analytics package (Version 5) also includes handy visitor flow visualisations, so it’s now much easier to see where users are being lost and how they travel from page to page within your site.
4. Estimate the effect of an offline campaign. Getting real data on the effectiveness of offline campaigns is difficult, whether you own a website or a bricks and mortar shop or both. One good trick is not to advertise your everyday URL. Set up a special page with a memorable name (www.sitename.com/special). The only people landing on this page will have heard about your site through the print, TV, or radio campaign.
It won’t be an exact figure as some people will head straight to www.sitename.com, but an estimate is better than nothing and this method will let you compare multiple offline ad campaigns against one another.
5. Find out what your visitors are looking for. If you have an internal site search capability, taking a look at commonly used search terms can give you some good ideas about new pages you might want to create. It can also provide clues to existing pages that should be easier to find. Heavy use of internal search is sometimes (not always) a sign that your navigation scheme needs to be tweaked for greater usability.
Jess Spate is professional web analyst with a PhD in data mining. She works with us to make sure all our clients get the very best out of their Google Analytics accounts.